Chloe Lim & Co

Inter-Floor Leakage Between Two Condominiums

What is inter-floor leakage?

Inter-floor leakage is defined as “any evidence of dampness, moisture or water penetration on the ceiling that forms part of the interior of a parcel, common property or limited common property, as the case may be; or on any furnishing material, including plaster, panel or gypsum board attached, glued, laid or applied to the ceiling that forms part of the interior of a parcel, common property or limited common property, as the case may be” (see Rule 55 of Strata Management (Maintenance & Management) Regulations 2015 (SMR 2015).

Who shall be responsible to repair & rectify this problem?

First Hand Purchaser

If you are a first-hand purchaser who bought the property from the Developer directly, you may issue a letter of demand to the Developer to repair/rectify the inter-floor leakage problem provided that the Property is still protected within the Defect Liability Period as stipulated in your Sale and Purchase Agreement.
Second Hand Purchaser/Defect Liability Expires

If you are not a first-hand purchaser or if the Defect Liability Period under your Sale and Purchase Agreement has expired, you may serve a notice to the Joint Management Body (JMB) / Management Corporation (MC) / Subsidiary Management Corporation (SMC) whichever applicable (see Regulation 56(1) of the SMR 2015). The JMB/MC/SMC shall within seven (7) days from the receipt of your notice carry out an inspection towards your parcel unit in order to determine the cause of the inter-floor leakage and the party responsible to rectify any defect that cause the inter-floor leakage (see Regulations 57 of the SMR 2015).

In determining the cause and the party responsible to rectify any defect, the management bodies shall adhere to the principles below (see Regulation 58 of SMR 2015):
(a) The law presumes that the defect that caused the inter-floor leakage is within the upstairs parcel unit (seealso Section 142 of the Strata Management Act 2013);

(b) any defect in water meter, water pipe, drainage pipe, sewerage pipe, gas meter, gas pipe and duct that serves more than one parcel is a defect of the common property or limited common property;

(c) any defect in water meter, water pipe, drainage pipe, sewerage pipe, gas meter, gas pipe and duct that serves only one parcel is a defect of that parcel; and

(d) any defect of any parcel, common property or limited common property during the defect liability period which is due to defective workmanship or materials or not constructed in accordance with the plans and description approved, shall be the responsibility of the Developer.

Within five (5) days of completion of inspection of the parcel, the JMB/MC/SMC shall issue a certificate of inspection in Form 28 to the main culprit (see Regulation 59 of SMR 2015).

Any person who is not satisfied with any decision made against him may refer to the Commissioner of Building and the Commissioner of Building shall determine the cause of the inter-floor leakage and the party responsible to rectify it (Regulation 64 of SMR 2015).

Where the inter-floor leakage is caused or attributable to a parcel, the owner to that particular parcel shall take all necessary steps to rectify the inter-floor leakage within seven (7) days from the receipt of the certificate of inspection, failing which, the JMB/MC/SMC shall take all the necessary steps and measures to rectify the inter-floor leakage and shall charge and recover all cost and expense from the party responsible to rectify the inter-floor leakage (see Regulation 61 of SMR 2015).

If the inter-floor leakage is caused or attributable to common property or limited common property and occurs after defect liability period, the JMB/MC/SMC shall without prejudice to his right to seek indemnity from any other party, take all the necessary steps and measures to rectify the inter-floor leakage (see Regulation 62 of SMR 2015).

The contents of this article do not constitute legal or other professional advice or an opinion of any kind. It is provided for general information purposes only. Please contact us for further enquiry.